MEET THE ARTISTS

PHILIPPINE WOOD

 

Each piece of our acacia wood collection is hand-crafted at a small family-run workshop outside of Manila in the Philippines.  Thanks to this work, they have become a cornerstone of their community providing training and employment for a team of 130 rural men and women.  We also love that this enterprise is run by the women of the family!

THE STARFISH PROJECT

 

The Starfish Project rescues exploited women and girls in Asia by helping them establish independence and develop careers.  Through the Holistic Care Programs, Starfish Project provides vocational training, healthcare, shelter, counseling, and education grants for women and their children. Starfish Project has employed over 130 women and has served thousands through Community Outreach Services. Women create beautiful jewelry and become managers, accountants, graphic designers, and photographers.  Starfish Project restores hope to exploited women in Asia.

KARIN HANSSEN

 

My interest in art started at an early age by applying my skills through all mediums from paint to photography. Only recently have my passions brought me to jewelry design. I want to create a line that represents the diversity in society, not to follow a trend, but create what inspires me and this line will allow me to do that. Adding classic touches, tribal twists and modernistic forms i hope to create something that stands out from the rest, catches your interest, sparks your creative side and inspires your soul to glow.

MATR BOOMIE

 

MATR BOOMIE is a fair trade collection from India that marries modern design sensibility with inspiring traditional art forms, bringing people and cultures closer together. With the mission of creating opportunities for women and minorities to realize their creative, economic and leadership potential. They have grown to empower 20,000 artisans in 40 partner communities throughout India.

CASSANDRA LOURIE

Lux + Luca was started by me, Cassandra Lourie in 2016 out of a desire to create bold jewelry with Elegance + Edge. Think Farrah Fawcett meets Joan Jett, Leather meets Lace, Pearls meets Brass Knuckles... Ok, you get the idea.

Even though I lacked a "formal" background in design or fashion, I have always had an eye for style and relied on what I wasn't seeing in the market to help map the vision of my jewelry line. I wanted bold, edgy (sometimes snarky) designs that would pair well with feminine, elegant materials to create the perfect vibe.  I love a chunky necklace with a raw cut of Tourmaline, while wearing a dainty gold fill cuff that sparkles so much you catch a glimpse of yourself in a window and...I digress.  From the day time hustle to drinks on the patio, this line of jewelry will bring out your inner Bad Ass every. single. time. 

LUCIA”S IMPORTS

 

Lucia's Imports LLC partners with Guatemalan families, artisan groups, and cooperatives to maintain a wholesale market for their quality accessories and handicrafts. Lucia's Imports is a members of the Fair Trade Federation and hopes to share the beauty of the Guatemala's art and culture, while making a difference in the lives of Mayan artisans, one purchase at a time.

Working side by side with artisans, we design products rich in tradition and sustainable fashion. Our purses, coin bags and accessories are made from recycled Mayan textiles and our hand-beaded jewelry is made by artisan groups on Lake Atitlan---utilizing traditional weaving skills in modern design.

COURTNEY JOHNSON

 

 

Courtney Johnsons’ namesake jewelry line, Bent by Courtney, is creative, contemporary & refined. Artisan vibes, specialized techniques & environmental elements narrate her rare aesthetic. A relentless pursuit to challenge the familiar yields an ethereal quality & supreme blend of masculine & feminine counterparts. Encapsulated by artistry & passion,
Bent by Courtney jewelry is bent to wear, meant to last.
Bent by Courtney has been featured in 

Cosmo Magazine, Barefootblonde.com, Who What Wear and The Ledger Enquirer. 

TONGA TEXTILES

 

 

Founded by Zimbabwean-born artist, this family-run business has rapidly grown into a leading international exporter of Zimbabwean-made Sadza Batiks. 
Set in the heart of Tynwald Industrial Park in Harare, Zimbabwe, Tonga Textiles is comprised of a dedicated team of artisans. 
Through art, we believe we can make a positive difference in society. Tonga Textiles employs both men and women in the community. Through our training program, our artisans are empowered to work for themselves, thus alleviating poverty within the community. Tonga Textiles is a fair-trade company.
Our values of sustainability practices, quality and teamwork are at the heart of all our work. 
Over the years, our products have evolved into contemporary pieces, showcasing the true essence of an African lifestyle. Our batiks are unique and every piece is authentic. The process is all hand-made and monitored to the very last detail. 

ENCANTADA POTTERY

 

There’s no sign to find the small family-owned ceramic workshop in the state of Guanajuato. Behind the large wooden gate, women artisans are hand painting unfired ceramics while men work the kilns, as they have since the late 70’s. Each piece has personality from the dots and swirls to the handpainted logo on the bottom. And each is lead free, microwave and dishwasher safe.

The Beach People

 

The Beach People was founded in the summer of 2013 by sisters Emma Henderson and Victoria Beattie in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales Australia. Inspired by their family, friends and seaside lifestyle, with their passion for creating beautiful and iconic products, their first collection of round towels sold out in weeks. A few short years later, they are building a globally admired brand of seaside luxe essentials for everyone, everywhere to enhance one’s living spaces and life experiences from the coast to home.

ARTISANAL

 

The Artisana Collection represents work from multiple artists in the famous Taxco region of Mexico, best known for it’s silver jewelry.  The artisans continue to produce traditional jewelry much like their ancestors. The groups who produce jewelry in this collection have formed cooperatives to pool together their talent and resources – the result has been a positive impact for the individual artisans and a bigger impact on the community. 

One example of a cooperative is The Union Progresista Artesanal (UPA)  which was formed in 1986 and is located in Taxco el Viejo.  The cooperative is made up of 26 jewelry makers who work collaboratively to sell a beautiful collection of jewelry; the group uses a wide range of beautiful materials that range from abalone, mother of pearl, sterling silver, Taxco silver, and much more. UPA has achieved stable income for many members of its community and bettered the community through initiatives that include support of local schools and programming geared towards the youth.  Artisans often work out of their homes and are paid fair wages.  The Fair Trade jewelry is not only beautiful, but each purchase helps to transform lives. 

VIRGINIA, ACACIA CREATIONS

 

Virginia joined Acacia Creations in Kenya in 2009.  She is a 26-year old single mother and star of the jewelry-making team.  Before joining Acacia, she taught herself to make jewelry and displayed her pieces each week at Nairobi's tourist markets.  She now has a steady income and has trained many of our newer jewelry makers. 

Acacia Creations has been supporting Virginia's daughter, Rachel, through sales of our Barefoot Bracelets.  We're very proud to say Rachel is now at the top of her elementary school class and will soon be heading to middle school!

GLOBAL MAMAS

 

Global Mamas creates hand-crafted accessories, apparel, decor, and skin care items using traditional techniques, maintaining local artisanal skills. Each product is full of life and love, and is crafted with the utmost quality. The producers in the Global Mamas network have worked together for over a decade in Ghana, West Africa developing products that resonate with consumers all over the world, and in-turn have created prosperity for themselves and their families.

MZ HANDBAGS

 

Shelley was volunteering with a microfinance non-profit in the small Zapotec village of Teotitlán del Valle in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico. She was offering business classes to the female loan recipients, many of whom were weavers. Shelley realized that no matter how exquisite the product, or how savvy their business skills, without buyers, these hardworking and skilled artisans were not able to support themselves or their families adequately. Three years later, MZ was born out of a belief that commerce can, and should, change lives for the better. What began as a wild idea to sell Zapotec bags globally, in a village where most of the women had never even left the state, has grown into a fair trade fashion brand run by a team of five women in the US and Mexico that supports over 50 artisans in Oaxaca. Thank you for your vision and hard work Shelley!

SIP

 

A unique, eco-friendly textile company owned and designed by California artist Julia Minasian.  SIP is dedicated to being ethically sustainable and all of our products have quality construction.  I believe that caring about others in our global community is an essential aspect of good business. Every company I work with has also been vetted for their values! 

I love to keep work on the fun side and stay dedicated to the meaning behind the company name: fully taste what life is bringing in each moment. SIP, don’t gulp or guzzle life. SAVOR LOVE! This philosophy is time tested: Living in the now makes for richness and delight in all ways.

Let's allow ordinary objects for fashion or home remind us to be kind to our selves, our earth and all its inhabitants.

LILIAN, ACACIA CREATIONS

 

Lilian heads our team of paper bead makers in Kisumu, western Kenya. She oversees up to 40 women in Kenya and Uganda and makes sure that we never run short of recycled paper beads.  Each bead is individually cut and rolled from magazine pages ensuring a steady supply of work for these women.

They often gather at her home in Kisumu to roll paper beads together.  According to Lilian, the income generated from the millions of beads they've made has completely transformed their lives. 

WILLOW

 

Each piece in the WILLOW line is created by and for real women, with real stories. We have something for everyone, especially you. Known for our seasonal storytelling, Willow connects with women looking for the next timeless piece to evolve with their ever-changing pace of life.

She is inspired by her surroundings & life experiences.

She expresses her identity & individuality through her closet.

She is feminine.

She is sophisticated.

She is confident.

ELLIE VAIL 

 

Ellie Vail Jewelry was founded in 2014 after former celebrity stylist Ellie Vail took an entrepreneurial leap and started designing jewelry full time.

 

Growing up, Ellie struggled with finding quality fashionable items in her budget. Ellie designs with her younger self in mind. She creates quality pieces while keeping the line affordable so no fashionista would ever have to turn away from her brand. If you love it, you can have it.

 

Ellie Vail jewelry is designed for the everyday woman. Her collection is a mix of classic pieces combined with the latest must have trends. Her pieces are sold in over 250 different retailers worldwide and have been coveted by countless celebrities and featured in some of the industries best magazines.

More Artist's Bios Coming Soon!

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